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Saturday, December 6, 2014


I recently re-read the third edition of Messages: The Communications Skills Book (McKay, Davis, & Fanning, 2009).  I had read their 2nd Edition (1995) some years back.  

The book is a nice compendium of the ways we send and receive messages through our voice, behaviors, and body language.  

The big takeaways for me from this reading were:

  • LISTENING is the most powerful tool we have at our disposal in the communications tool chest.
  • Transparency and disclosure are excellent door openers to high quality communications.
  • Body language is at least as important as oral delivery.
  • Assertiveness can be expressed without being aggressive.
  • Employing validation strategies serves all parties in the communications contexts well.
  • All of us engage others from the basis of our own experiences.  Trying to understand the other's experiences fully is an excellent starter for improved communications. 
  • Quality questions always a good conversation starter, regardless of the kind of communications environment in which we find ourselves.
A good read.  Worth the time (again).

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